Sunday, July 4, 2010

One Bright Summer Day

I'd give all wealth that years have piled,
The slow result of Life's decay,
To be once more a little child
For one bright summer day.

~Lewis Carroll, "Solitude"

After a dreary, rainy June, July has come upon us with sun and delicious heat! What else could we do (for three days straight!) but head to the perfect playground? Your beach may have fine white sand, or coarse granules. The bottom may be firm, squishy, carpeted in bark or rampant with weeds. Maybe it's in a protected park, or maybe there are broken clamshells or broken glass to cut your feet on. Ours has a sign that reads "Nudity is prohibited" that we live in an area where signs like that are necessary!

Provided that he or she is well-supervised by the water and protected from the sun, the beach is a child's dream. There is stimulation for every sense: the sound of the breeze and the waves, the smell of water and pine, the crunch and heat of sand under your toes, blue and more blue to see, and hopefully some snacks packed by mama! Hummus and crackers and fruit are our beach essentials.
There's that gasp as the cold waves lick your belly.

 The first time you take your child to a beach, you will be astounded at how many creases and crevices there are on your her body, and how the sand can find its way into every single one of them.

There are so many things to love about the beach. My favourite is how satisfied my children are after a day there; everyone dozes on the way home, sand in their hair and bums, and a tinge of sun on their faces. The wind, sun, and water conspire to drug them into a stupor, so bedtime is usually a simple affair. And all mama has to do is shake the sand out of the quilt, and hang it on the line with the towels and suits, ready to be packed up tomorrow.

Do you have a favourite childhood memory of the beach?


  1. We never went to the beach when I was growing up, but it's something I love to do with my own children. We go to Point Pelee, where the beaches have lots of stones and are actually quite hard on the feet, but it's fun and we love it.

  2. LOL! While I did get the baby all rinsed off and relatively sand-free before the journey home from the beach yesterday, I did discover that my top was FULL of sand when I went to nurse her before bed.

    I spent many a childhood weekends camping on gorgeous sandy beaches on the islands of Georgian Bay. My most distinct memory is of freshly washed cutlery stuck in the sand to dry. Oh, and getting stranded in that burning hot sand.

  3. I'll never forget my time at a lake in northern Ontario...I still don't know where it was, or what it was called. All I remember is that it was so clear blue, you could see down to the very bottom, even in the deepest part. The sand was white and solid, and was laid out in ripples as far as the eye could see. I know now that the lake is essentially "dead" (hence why it is so clear and lacks any fish or plant), but as a child who was a little peculiar about muck and fish, I was fascinated by the clean, blue water.

  4. I have memories of Mink Lake beach trips, with all of the details you described in this post plus watermelon, sleeping bags to lie on, and Dad throwing us into the water over and over.
    One of the best things in this life is that my children will share these exact memories as yours. It WAS a fabulous weekend.

  5. I grew up by a lake...spend my days from 10 yrs on, swimming every single summer day in a beautiful lake!! We used to love tipping the swim raft...stand about 10 people on one end til it was submerged in the water and then jump off!

    Looks like you had a fun weekend!
    xo maureen

  6. oh i miss the beach. i didn't go alot as a kid, but as i grew up i did and always lived by it until now. but we have a lake now and have been spending alot of time in it!

    still...i miss the ocean! thanks for bringing it all back with your words..:)

    i left an award for you over at my blog..stop by and check it out..:)


  7. Love the sunny photos. they look like they could be from here in Miami!!

  8. Isn't the beach great? We haven't been this week, because it was just too hot and we would have burnt like lobsters, but the swimming pool and petting zoo (with mini pool) did the trick as well!
    Love to the kids!


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